ATV Trails in Harrisonburg, Virginia

ATV Trails in Harrisonburg, Virginia
The George Washington and Jefferson National Forests offer hundreds of miles of ATV trails for all skill levels through all types of terrain. The wooded Appalachian Mountains near Harrisonburg offer a mix of streams, boulders, mud, wide trails, canopied paths and mountain views. The George Washington and Jefferson National Forests contain a combined 1.8 million acres of public land.

Rocky Run ATV/OHV Trail

Rocky Run ATV Trail is an out-of-the-way, local favorite, according to Christian Canary of the U.S. Forest Service. Most of the trail's visitors come to the area for hunting and fishing, with ATV-riding as a secondary pursuit. There are ten miles of wooded trails divided into two main sections, Dictum Ridge and Second Mountain. While there are boulders, rocky terrain and a water crossing, one of the trails also doubles as wider path for off-highway vehicles, providing easier going for ATV beginners. The Dictum Ridge and Second Mountain trails are connected by a two-mile stretch of expert-level terrain. The trails thread their way along the tops of ridges, affording views through the branches of the oak, hickory and Virginia pines. The trail is open year round, but may not be accessible following snow or other rough weather because the access roads aren't plowed. The trail is located 12 miles west east of Harrisonburg along state highways and country roads, according to the Forest Service. The final stretch of the commute is a Forest Development Road suitable only for high clearance vehicles. There are hotels and restaurants in Harrisonburg, and developed campsites at Hone Quarry, with hook-ups for water, sewer and electricity, within ten miles of the trail. The area also features many primitive tent sites. Helmets are required, and an adult must accompany operators 16-years-old or younger.

Peters Mill Run and Taskers Gap

Peters Mill Run and Taskers Gap have a combined 40 miles of wooded OHV trails crossing Massanutten Mountain, accommodating ATVs, four-wheel drives, motorcycles and motorbikes, according to the Forest Service. The system is located outside of Luray, Virginia. To ride the trails, operators need to buy a permit, which is available by mail or at several area gas stations and markets. The permit allows operators to ride the trails for a day, three consecutive days or annually. Three campgrounds within 20 miles of Edinburgh Gap offer parking, restrooms, tent pads, picnic tables and fire rings. Two of them, the Camp Roosevelt and Elizabeth Furnace campgrounds, provide a place to dump camper toilets.

South Pedlar OHV Trail

The South Pedlar ATV Trail System offers 19 miles of ATV trails through the wilderness of the Glenwood and Pedlar Ranger Districts. The wooded system is broken into seven smaller trails that range from three miles to a half-mile, with an 11-mile route around the system's boundary, according to the U.S. Forest Service. There are trail terrains for all skill levels, and the trails are suitable for ATVs, motorbikes and mountain bikes. More specifically, they're for vehicles 50-inches wide or less, controlled by handle bars (not steering wheels) and straddled by a rider. The trailhead is located east of Lynchburg, along State Route 130 toward the Blue Ridge Parkway. The trails are closed seasonally from December 1 to March 31. Operators need to buy a permit to ride this trail, which is available by mail. They are also available at area gas stations and markets. The permit is basically the small fee to ride the trails for a day, three consecutive days or annually.

Article Written By Sara Harvey

Based in New York City, Sara Harvey has written about the environment, city planning, health and lifestyles since 1994. A former newspaper reporter, she now writes freelance full time. Her work has appeared in "Boho," a New York-based green fashion magazine, and several humor, parenting and business publications. Harvey has a bachelor's degree in print journalism.

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